“Goodnight Grandpa” “Goodnight Johnboy” …. “Goodnight Twitter”

How far are we from the fade-in view of the darkened farmhouse windows, as the family that has survived another day together sets in for slumber?

     “The Waltons” television show depicted a large family, oft riled by life’s tribulations. Each week, by the end of the episode at shut-eye time, they were cozy under one roof, and ready to let go the day with their “Goodnight’s.” For example ….

ELIZABETH: “Goodnight Johnboy.”

JOHNBOY: “Goodnight Elizabeth. Goodnight, Daddy.”
JOHN: “Goodnight, son. Goodnight. Mary Ellen.”
MARY ELLEN: “Goodnight, Daddy. Goodnight, Mama.”
OLIVIA: “Goodnight, Mary Ellen. Goodnight, Jim Bob.”
JIM BOB: Goodnight, Mama. Goodnight, Grandpa ….”

Everyone in the large family was bid goodnight before the last farmhouse lights went out. ’Twas a scene that we all could identify, and smile at, and pull up the covers to.

Now I see folks saying goodnight per my glowing computer screen. Not saying goodnight to their kin, nor to me, but saying goodnight to Twitter. And my brows furrow. I get the message, even per their being well below their allowed 140 characters, that this is an endearing note … to Twitter, that I happen to see.

Oh, I understand that I’m somewhere in the note-giver’s intentions – lost. They have no conception whether I’m Mary Ellen or Jim Bob they’re addressing. And they don’t care, I surmise. I’m somewhere in the cloud of Twitter, that they have plugged into all the way to bedtime. Instead of saying goodnight before they shut off the lamp, they say goodnight before they shut down the computer. They say goodnight to the Twitter stream that I happen to trickle through. And I wonder why they bother.

Yet since they did, I reply to wish them sweet dreams. And continue tapping at the keyboard.

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